Killing Floor

A revelatory historical drama that offers a powerful template for social analysis in fiction.

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The Killing Floor

During World War I, impoverished African-American father Frank Custer (Damien Leake) leaves his Southern family and heads to Chicago in search of work. After landing a job at one of the city's many slaughterhouses, he gets caught up in the heated debate over organized labor. Before long he emerges as a hypnotic leader, urging his peers to join the union, a move that puts him at odds with his best friend, Thomas (Ernest Rayford), who starts to question Frank's motivations for backing the union.
Runtime
118
Language
English
Director
Bill Duke
Cast
Damien Leake, Alfre Woodard, Moses Gunn, Clarence Felder
FEATURED REVIEW
Richard Brody, New Yorker

“The Killing Floor,” the first feature directed by Bill Duke, from 1984, is a revelatory historical drama that offers a powerful template for social analysis in fiction. (It’s streaming on Film Forum’s Virtual Cinema, in a new restoration.) The film follows Frank Custer (Damien Leake), a young black ...

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